Miami Residents Rally to Ask Burger King to Stop Destroying Forests for Fast Food
Burger King crowned “Deforestation King” as Miamian’s deliver petition with more than 500,000 signatures to Burger King Headquarters
Today, Miamian’s gathered at Burger King at 955 SW 107th Ave to call on Burger King to stop buying food products linked to destruction of forests in tiger, jaguar and sloth habitat. The volunteers delivered a petition to Burger King, part of a national day of action, with more than 500,000 signatures and emails gathered by Mighty Earth, Union of Concerned Scientists, SumOfUs, and Care2 calling on the fast food giant to adopt stronger environmental protection policies.
Today’s gathering in Miami is part of a larger national grassroots movement calling for Burger King to join other food companies in working to eliminate deforestation and human rights abuse from its beef, soy, and palm oil supply chains. Additionally, local students have pledged not to work for Burger King until the Deforestation King abdicates his throne. Rallies are also being held today in Denver, East Lansing, Atlanta, Minneapolis, Austin, , and White Plains.
Mighty Earth conducted an extensive investigation into Burger King’s suppliers. Through satellite analysis and field research, investigators found evidence of massive destruction of rainforests and other ecosystems in Latin America by the agribusiness companies Cargill and Bunge, both of which provide food products to Burger King through its suppliers. Cargill also operates a joint venture with Burger King. Mighty sent a team to Brazil and Bolivia and documented extensive deforestation in areas that Cargill and Bunge operate, home to a diverse array of wildlife including three-toed sloths, jaguars, and giant anteaters. The full findings of this investigation will be shared in a report in the upcoming weeks.
Burger King is the world’s second largest hamburger chain and one of the leading sellers of meat in the world – it operates in approximately 100 countries with more than 15,000 restaurants.
Burger King is a fast food industry laggard when it comes to protecting the environment. In stark contrast to the other leading global food and commodity firms, including McDonald’s, ADM, Wilmar, and Louis Dreyfus, Burger King does not have a “No Deforestation, No Peat, and No Exploitation” policy to ensure that its suppliers are not destroying pristine forests and ecosystems or harming local communities.
“What you’re seeing locally on the ground here is really a piece of a larger grassroots movement of consumers demanding to know where their food comes from,” said Fatah Sadaoui, Senior Campaigner with SumOfUs. “Like McDonald’s, Burger King should listen to its customers who are asking for food produced without forest destruction or human rights abuse.”
This year, millions of hectares of land in Latin America will be destroyed unnecessarily by companies willing to buy food without asking questions about how it is produced. Across Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, Uruguay and other leading agricultural producers, an average of 4 million hectares of forests are cleared each year and cattle pasture and soy farms are the largest drivers.
The volunteers at the event are calling for Burger King to:
- Follow the lead of others in the food industry to stop destroying forests and other ecosystems by adopting and implementing a strong “No Deforestation, No Peat, and No Exploitation” policy;
- Identify its suppliers and report on their compliance with environmental and human rights policies;
- Work with governments, communities, and civil society to support broader improvements in forest governance and sustainable agricultural expansion.
“Burger King, Cargill, and Bunge now have a unique opportunity to sever the link between food production, deforestation, and climate change in Latin America and beyond. It’s time they seize it,” said Sharon Smith at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
Click here to sign the petition: http://www.mightyearth.org/king-of-deforestation/
About Mighty Earth
Mighty is a global environmental campaign organization that works to protect forests, conserve oceans, and address climate change.
SumOfUs is a global consumer group that campaigns to hold big corporations accountable. Over 10 million people have taken over 50 million actions worldwide with SumOfUs since it launched.
About Union of Concerned Scientists
The Union of Concerned Scientists puts rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet’s most pressing problems. Joining with citizens across the country, we combine technical analysis and effective advocacy to create innovative, practical solutions for a healthy, safe and sustainable future.